The larvae have soft, white bodies and, with very few exceptions, no legs.
Metamorphosis in Diptera is complete; the larvae are utterly different from the perfect insects in appearance, and, although varying greatly in outward form, are usually footless grubs; those of the Muscidae are generally known as maggots.
According to Sharp, all Dermestid larvae probably feed on dried animal matters; he mentions one species that can find sufficient food in the horsehair of furniture, and another that eats the dried insect-skins hanging in old cobwebs.
Stridulating organs among beetle-larvae have been noted, especially in the wood-feeding grub of the stag-beetles (Lucanidae) and their allies the Passalidae, and in the dung-eating grubs of the dor-beetles (Geotrupes), which belong to the chafer family (Scarabaeidae).
The root-feeding larvae of the cockchafer and allied members of the Scarabaeidae have a ridged area on the mandible, which is scraped by teeth on the maxillae, apparently forming a stridulating organ.